Friday, January 9, 2009



Yesterday I drove a friend to chemo.

But if you think this is going to be a maudlin post, you're wrong. It's not.

This is a post about spending time with a dear friend. In a surreal situation.

First, you bring a big, heavy bag packed by another friend. It's filled with comfort items like a warm fuzzy blanket, a soft sleep mask, comfy slippers, some food (dark chocolate, clementines, Saltines), a bottle of hand sanitizer, some magazines, an iPod and a laptop. The bag should have two handles so you can carry it together. To share the load.

Your dear friend tells you which subjects are taboo. You honor this.

Once the nurse has the IV hooked up, you get things situated with a cup of ice chips, snacks, a blanket from the warmer, the fuzzy blanket from the bag, the comfy slippers.

Then you both settle in, switching gears from your fast-paced normal world of kids and chores and carpools and sports and homework. Now, it's just the two of you and an IV drip that won't be hurried. You chat. And munch.

Then it's time to boot up the laptop.

And now I will tell you the name of a movie that is perfect for a day like today.

Death at a Funeral.

This is one incredibly zany British flick.

Out of an entire room of people sitting in La-Z-Boy like chairs and hooked up to IVs, we were the only two laughing hysterically.

And that is worth a lot.

Happy Birthday, Cindy. Love you. xo

35 comments:

Vodka Mom said...

that made me tear up.

You are an incredible friend, and I send CIndy a shitload of prayers.



xoxox

doggybloggy said...

wow.......

David Cranmer said...

A wonderful post.

Kristen Painter said...

Interesting take on what could have been a really maudlin day. I've dealt with cancer, but didn't have to have chemo for which I am grateful.

Laura said...

What a wonderful friend you are...hugs and prayers!

Mac and Cheese said...

Sounds like a good day, for a bad one. Prayers going out to Cindy.

Alli said...

Thank goodness for the Brits and they're amazing sense of humour. I love that movie, and laughing at a movie is a great way to take the pressure off something so serious. I hope Cindy recovers quickly.

Charles Gramlich said...

You did a nice thing.

Sheri said...

I love teh style in which you wrote that post. Almost like a How To. And even though it was not intended to... it still made me tear up. I remember that room all too well, with Lazy Boy chairs and IV's that won't be hurried.

My best wishes to your friend!

Sheri said...

OH! And I recently saw that movie too. It was hilarious!

Sarah Laurenson said...

Will have to check out the movie.

Laughter, keeping up good spirits - these are things we were told would help a cancer patient in their battle against the disease.

I'm glad you got to spend this time with your friend. It's amazing to stop and enjoy the moment like that.

Bee said...

What a good way to get the time to pass . . . I bet everyone else was just flicking through magazines.

Black humor seems appropriate at that sort of occasion.

JaneyV said...

There is no doubt that laughter is the best medicine and the darker the humour the deeper the belly laugh. How fantastic that you two shared a love of the zany. I know the film you're talking about and I'm waiting for it to come through LoveFilm.com. In that situation even the title of that movie would have cheered me up. I wasn't joking on my post when I said I laugh at all the "wrong" times.

Big healing hugs to your friend. I am so glad she has you to laugh with.

Sarakastic said...

So far my thoughts on this post include the word wow

Sally Lawton said...

Reading this makes me feel bad for every complaining about anything in life.
I've not seen that film though, will definitely look out for it.

Sending much love to you and your friend x

Jason said...

That was beautiful, Barrie.

Keri Mikulski said...

I love this post, Barrie! Cancer recently affected one of my parent's and this blog seriously made me tear up. :) You are such a nice, wonderful friend. I read recently that laughter actually cured a woman from breast cancer.

Happy Birthday, Cindy and stay strong!!

Monnik said...

This is a really great post. Cindy is lucky to have an amazing friend like you.

Michele said...

That's a great movie, Barrie! Keep her laughing... It makes all the difference!! :)

Hugs,

Michele

P.S. Love the new look around here! Sorry it's been so long since I've stopped by.

laughingwolf said...

happy day, cindy... and get well, quickslike :D

Bookworm said...

You sound like a wonderful friend. Cindy is lucky to have someone like you. (: Happy Birthday to her! (:

Kelley said...

What I could friend. I pray I never need chemo but if I do you can drive me.

Barbara Martin said...

Beautiful post about a sensitive caring person, Barrie. Cindy is fortunate to have you as her friend. Kudos to you.

Laura said...

This is not only good advice for those of us who may need to be the chemo company to others, but it is also a nice tribute to your friendship.
Very touching.

Shana said...

Everyone should have a friend like you : )

Travis Erwin said...

Good friends are worth their weight in gold. Sorry for the cliche but the truth is the truth. Thanks for being a friend to me as well as others.

Laurie said...

What a nice friend you are, what a nice day you had and love and happiness to your dear friend. Oh, and I'm moving Death at a Funeral to the top of my Netflix queue. Thanks. :)

Patti said...

sweetness...when i needed it.

blueviolet said...

You are the definition of a true friend.

Amy said...

Such a wonderful friend you are! And I hope that if I ever go through something like that, I would have someone like you by my side :)

Thank you for the get well thoughts for my knee. I feel silly about it, but I do hope it heals quite soon!

Roo said...

About a year ago a friend of mine lost her battle with breast cancer. http://itsjustme-roo.blogspot.com/2008/02/saying-good-bye-to-two-special-friends.html. This will sound horrible to some, but I missed the opportunity to help her through these sessions. She shared with us through her page on CARINGBRIDGE.ORG the special times she had with the friends that were able to be there. From the stories and pictures she shared, I can imagine you and your friend working through all of this. Please tell her she has one more person in her cheering section and thank you for the great post.

Barrie said...

Roo, thank you for sharing and thank you for the link. I read some of Marla's journal. With a huge lump in my throat. I believe that spending time together at chemo sessions in only one way to help. For eg., another friend delivered homemade soup to Cindy yesterday. And that meant a lot to her. I guess what I'm trying to say is that everything counts, little and big, and we don't even always know how we've touched someone. xo

Beth said...

Bless you both.
Laughter is such a wonderful thing to share - any time, any place.

Chantal said...

Wow, just wow!

Linda McLaughlin said...

A very touching post, Barrie. you're a good friend. I hope Cindy's treatment is successful.

Linda